Five Creepy Old People in Films

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Old people may look harmless, but beware...

Although elderly people in films are usually portrayed as benign and lovable, sometimes an old character comes along that's way too creepy, like the Reverend Henry Kane in

Poltergeist II

, the decaying lady in the bath tub from

The Shining

, and the terrible trio in

Trash Humpers

, showing this weekend at Madcap Theaters in Tempe.

We recently sat down to discuss five other creepy old people in films with Madcap Theaters' Andrea Beesley-Brown, a.k.a. the Midnite Movie Mamacita. Here's where the golden years get a little bloody.

Anguish (Luna Films, 1987):
This is a Spanish film, and it's beautifully done. It's a fantasy gore kind of film, with a weird psychedelic ambiance. It's definitely an artful horror movie. Zelda Rubenstein is creepy in it, but what movie isn't she creepy in? She plays the mother of this character that becomes a serial killer, but he's like a mama's boy. She's definitely the dominating mother, even though she's this really small person. She manipulates him and makes him do things.

Check out the trailer and four more fogie flicks after the jump ... 

2. Grey Gardens

(Portrait Films, 1975):

It's kind of mean to say there are creepy old people in this, because

the people are real, but they are so creepy

. This is a documentary about old women related to Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis -- one's her aunt, and another is her cousin. And they're these really eccentric old ladies who live in this decaying mansion in East Hampton. It's like they've fallen from grace, and they have this beautiful mansion, but it's totally unkempt. Wild animals get in there, they're hoarders, and they're so removed from the world. Trees have grown over the mansion, and they have their groceries delivered. It's really sad. It's like, how do these ladies survive?

3. Psycho (Shamley Productions, 1960):
This is such an excellent movie. It's one of my all-time favorites. What makes Norman Bates' mother so creepy is that this is a character that doesn't really exist -- only in Norman's mind -- but she has a presence throughout the film. We see her skeleton at the end of the film, but until then, we don't think she's dead. Norman does her voice and has arguments with himself, he leaves imprints in the bed where she would have been bedridden. Her shadow rocks back and forth in the chair. She's always a creepy presence, before we find out Norman's delusional.

4. Hellraiser (Cinemarque Entertainment, 1987):
The creepy old character is barely on screen, but he leaves quite an impression. He's known just as "The Derelict." In one of the scenes, he just turns up and gets a bunch of crickets together and eats them. Near the end of the film, he plays with the Hellraiser box and turns into a dragon and flies away. I think he's basically meant to be the devil or the keeper of the box.

5. Trash Humpers (Alcove Entertainment, 2009):
I have to admit, I got through about 20 minutes of this at home, and my husband was like, 'This is so bad. Can you please turn it off?' They're not actually old people in the film -- they're wearing old people masks -- but they look old. Basically, the movie's about this trio of old people who do all these weird things -- they hump trash, they tie a doll to a bike and drag it behind them, they break into houses and smash stuff -- it's so bizarre. It's shot on VHS, so it's got this kind of gritty look, too. It's more of a cult movie, even though it showed at Sundance. I'll be honest -- I was so glad I didn't waste my time and see it at Sundance. I'm definitely not recommending it, but a lot of people love terrible movies.

Trash Humpers screens at 8 and 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, September 10 and 11, at MadCap Theaters, 730 S. Mill Avenue in Tempe. Tickets cost $8. Call 480-634-5192 or visit www.madcaptheaters.com for more information.

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